The Whitewater Fire burning in the Gila Wilderness has now merged with the Baldy Fire also burning in the Gila Wilderness. It will now be called the Whitewater-Baldy Complex and John Pierson's New Mexico Type II Interagency Incident Management team will assume command this afternoon.
Yesterday's wind event pushed the Baldy Fire north and northeast to Cub Mountain and towards Jackass Park. The fire is burning at times through heavily timbered areas causing smoke to become more concentrated. Fire behavior is expected to be similar today with more predicted strong winds and a Red Flag warning in the forecast.
With the wind event foreseeable through the weekend, anyone planning on traveling into this part of the Gila Wilderness should plan on taking another route or call the Wilderness Ranger District office at (575) 536-2250 or the Whitewater Fire Information at (575) 533 6901for more information as certain trails may be closed.
Fire managers are implementing suppression strategies, such as using natural barriers to decrease the risk to fire personnel. The Baldy fire is approximately 2 miles in distance from the perimeter of the Whitewater fire.
As fire burns through dense, heavily timbered areas, smoke will become thicker.
Smoke may accumulate in low-lying areas but is expected to lift during the mid-morning hours. Depending on fire behavior, wind direction and speed, there may be smoke impacts to downwind areas. See http://www.satguard.com/ for real time smoke monitoring information. Select the Silver City or Buckhorn monitor location.
The Baldy Fire will continue to be observed closely by air and lookout.
Visit inciweb.org for more information.
|Date of Origin||Wednesday May 09th, 2012 approx. 12:00 AM|
|Location||Gila Wilderness 1 mile south of Mogollon Baldy Lookout Tower|
|Incident Commander||Seth Carbonari|
|Estimated Containment Date||Thursday July 12th, 2012 approx. 12:00 AM|
The Baldy Fire is moving in a north and northeast direction, and is burning in rugged terrain at times in heavy timber, downed logs, brush and dead grass. It reached an old burn scar from the Cub Fire 2002.
Moderate to extreme.
The Baldy Fire is now in Cub Creek and Jackass Park.Yesterday's winds pushed the fire north and east along Cub Creek with today's fire behavior expected to be similar to yesterday. White Creek Cabin has been wrapped with fire resistant material to protect it.
Being observed closely by air and lookout tower. Mogollon Baldy lookout is not currently staffed and the cabin has been wrapped with fire resistant material. Other point protection needs are currently progressing. A closure order for trails west of the Gila Cliff Dwellings Visitor center is currently being implemented.
Extreme, rugged and rocky.
Minimal smoke impact visible from the Baldy Fire. Whitewater Fire, north of Baldy Fire, is producing very visable smoke column. Please call the Wilderness Ranger District (575) 536-2250 or Whitewater Fire information line at (575) 533-6901 for updates on trails if planning on entering this part of the Gila Wilderness.
|Wind Conditions||14 mph SW|